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Nevada school tackles responsible mining

Establishes Energy Resource Governance Initiative academy Metal Tech News – April 14, 2021

Facing the worldwide growing demand for vital technology minerals and metals, a new Energy Resource Governance Initiative academy program has been established at the University of Nevada, Reno. With Nevada recently titled as the top mining destination in the world by the Fraser Institute's Annual Survey of Mining Companies, this is a prime location for such a facility.

"The new paradigm shift from fossil-fuel based energy to renewables and electric batteries has created a huge demand for critical energy resource minerals and metals, including lithium, cobalt, nickel, graphite, copper, lead, zinc, manganese, silver, molybdenum, titanium, among others," said Manoj Mohanty, chair of the Department of Mining and Metallurgical Engineering and director of the program.

The program, which received funding from the U.S. Department of State's Bureau of Energy, will bring experts from several countries to collaborate on best mining operations and practices, as part of the global trend to manage responsible governance of energy resource minerals and metals.

This initiative will invite government delegates from partnering countries and train them to build their capacity in effectively governing the environmental resource management mining in their countries.

"We believe these trainings would sufficiently enlighten the visiting delegates to help strengthen their country's institutional capacities in best-in-class mining sector operations, management, regulations, and enforcement," said Mohanty. "In addition to the knowledge sharing, the academy will most certainly build a strong connection between the program team members and the delegates visiting from the ERM-rich countries. Therefore, it is believed that the proposed effort may lead to many collaborative efforts between the foreign delegates and the U.S. experts much beyond the program duration in relation to the ERM governance and supply-chain management."

The training will detail hands-on workshops, in-class teaching and field tours to mine sites in Nevada and nearby states, all taught by world-renowned experts from the mining and ERM industries, members of the Department of Mining and Metallurgical Engineering's professional advisory board, as well as several faculty members from the university's Mackay School of Earth Sciences and Engineering.

The ten topic areas are:

Overview of mining of energy resource minerals.

Data Acquisition and Management.

Mine reclamation and environmental management.

Workforce development.

Fiscal terms and contracts.

Mineral licensing, leasing and international standards for resource reporting.

Regulatory enforcement.

Health and safety standards.

Social license to operate.

Geographic information system.

As most of the metals and minerals listed as critical to United States' economic and national security are in short supply, the State Department's Bureau of Energy has formed a strategic alliance with many energy resource mineral-rich countries such as Canada, Australia, Peru, Botswana, Argentina, Brazil, Columbia, Congo, Namibia, and the Philippines to ensure resilient supplies in the future.

The University of Nevada's Energy Resource Governance Initiative is expected to help facilitate this worldwide collaboration.

The primary focus of the ERGI Academy, which is based at the university's Mackay School, is to promote responsible energy resource mineral and metals governance worldwide, support the development of resilient supply chains, and help to meet the expected energy resource mineral demand for clean energy technologies in the future.

Mackay School's Academy, the only Energy Resource Governance Initiative academy funded by the State Department in 2020, is expected to begin in 2021 and run through 2023.


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